Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Our reading for this week from Psalm 80:7-19 describes a garden planted by God. It is a beautiful garden, and fruitful. It spreads freely, within its boundaries, which were established by God.
God’s Word is often compared to a fruitful vine. God brings forth produce according to His will. He fills his world with all it needs to thrive.
How do we explain suffering? Somebody has broken down the wall and invaded the garden. The central picture of this passage is that of sin. As sin has entered the world, the walls of God’s garden are broken, some wild animals are eating the plants, and others are trampling the ground.
Does God restore his people? Yes, he does. But even as he does so, he wants us to realize that he is the only hope for his people. He is the only one who rescues them. He is the only one who restores them. He is the God of the garden. We need have no substitutes. We dare have none.
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